Degree Name

Master of Music

Department or Program



James Reifinger


Music education in the United States at the secondary level has expanded to offer diverse classes that students can take to learn about different genres of music. Jazz has been included in the music education curriculum for a long time and has become increasingly popular since its inception. The development of jazz education has been steady but there are problems that can still be solved to improve its state. A major concern amongst music educators about jazz education is how to successfully teach it. This research paper analyzes the history of jazz education, successful high school jazz educators of the past, and the methods used by jazz educators to give a proper jazz education to secondary school students. The purpose for this paper is to inform music educators who are interested or required to operate a jazz program at the secondary level about how early music educators were able to successfully teach jazz music to an ensemble, and what techniques should be applied when teaching their own high school jazz ensemble.